Tag Archives: Joseph Ejercito Estrada

Walang Binatbat Si Manny Villarroyo Sa Mga Ilocano (Tanong Mo Pa Sa Mga Marcos)

Erap confident of Solid North vote due to loyalty to Marcos LAOAG CITY, Ilocos Norte â€“ Former President Joseph Estrada, standard-bearer of the Pwersa ng Masang Pilipino (PMP), remains confident that the people of Ilocos Norte would still support his candidacy despite the political affiliation of Ferdinand “Bongbongâ€� Marcos with the Nacionalista Party (NP) of Sen. Manuel Villar Jr. Estrada, in an interview upon arrival at the Laoag Interna-tional Airport here, yesterday said Ilocanos would vote for him as they did in the 1998 presi-dential elections when he got a solid vote from the so-called Solid North. According to him, the Ilocanos know of his loyalty to the late President Ferdinand Marcos. Estrada recalled that he was one of those who visited the late strongman who was in exile in Honolulu, Hawaii against the advice of his fellow senators. He said Ilocanos would remember that he was a good friend to the Marcoses. Estrada was with running mate Makati City Mayor Jejomar Binay and PMP senatorial candidates, former Sen. Francisco “Kitâ€� Tatad, Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile, Senate President Pro Tempore Jinggoy Estrada, ZTE national broadband whistle-blower Jose de Venecia III and former Negros Occidental Rep. Apolinario â€œJunâ€� Lozada. Bongbong Marcos is running for senator under the banner of the NP although he is also a guest candidate of the PMP. Estrada added that while the Arroyo government is celebrating Edsa 2 in Manila, the PMP decided to continue its provincial sorties. He noted that celebrating Edsa 2 is a shame. “Our democracy became a joke the past nine years. The challenge of the next president is to bring back the integrity of our democracy,â€� Estrada said in his message regarding the People Power Revolution being celebrated in Manila. Estrada noted that the bible of our democracy, the Constitution, has repeatedly been trampled upon by the present administration to the point that Philippine democracy has become a joke to the worldwide community. Meanwhile, NP candidates led by Villar yesterday virtually made a “sortieâ€� inside Camp Aguinaldo, the general headquarters of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) which is supposed to be insulated from any partisan political activity. Villar, along with his running mate Sen. Loren Legarda and several members of the NP senatorial lineup, held a unity walk outside the compound of the Intelligence Service of the AFP (Isafp) after a visit to detained Marine Col. Ariel Querubin, who is seeking a Senate seat under the NP banner. They are also bent on pursuing Querubin’s temporary release from detention, to allow him to campaign for his senatorial bid. “We will try to exhaust all means even if we know that being in the opposition could be make things more difficult for him. But we will try to do the best we can,â€� Villar said. The senator said he will make representations with the authorities, in hope of forging an arrangement through appropriate procedures to address the situation of Querubin. AFP spokesman Lt. Col. Romeo Brawner, however, maintained the military leadership gave the go signal for Villar’s group visit. Brawner said AFP Chief of Staff Gen. Victor Ibrado, who has been reiterating his reminder for the military troops to remain non-partisan, was aware of the scheduled visit of Villar to Querubin who has been detained at the Isafp. “That is an ordinary visit to their partymate, this was coursed through the camp commander and CS (Ibrado). The CS said that it is not allowed to campaign inside the camp but since it’s an ordinary visit to a detained partymember, the CS allowed it on condition that they will not campaign inside and they did not campaign, what they did was not campaigning,â€� Brawner explained. “When you campaign, you are telling the people outright to vote for them,â€� he added. But in a statement released after the briefing, Brawner stated “the AFP said the group of Senator Villar violated an agreement that no campaigning will be done when they were allowed to visit Querubin inside Camp Aguinaldo today (Thursday). Senator Villar and members of his party made a unity walk and raised the hands of their candidates. The CSAFP (Ibrado) instructed that the group of Senator Villar be warned against repeating such actions when they visit Querubin in the future. “Moreover, the Military Police has been reminded to strictly implement the policy that no vehicles with campaign stickers or posters will be allowed inside the camp,â€� Brawner added in the statement. Aside from the NP candidates, campaign materials like posters and leaflets from their vehicles were seen by the media who caught the unity walk on camera.

 

 

From: http://www.tribune.net.ph/headlines/20100226hed2.html

The Ghost of FPJ: Beware the Liberal Party?

The ghost of Fernando Poe Jr., or FPJ for short, was reportedly seen by his grave at the Manila North Cemetery on Tuesday, October 27, 2009. The ‘apparition’ witness asks why FPJ chose to show himself to her. The incident seems to be the first time the man deprived of the 2004 presidential victory “Hello Garci” style made himself visible by his tomb. Could it be that because we are only months away from another opportunity of presidential reckoning, FPJ wants the people to remember? Is Poe Jr., called by many as the genuine 14th President of the Philippines, asking the Filipinos not to vote for all those who conspired to cheat him, hid the real numbers and installed instead the “Hello Garci ” perpetrator Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo? Is FPJ asking the people not to vote the parties that operated at either the military/Comelec or congressional canvassing level–Lakas-Kampi and the Liberal Party  (LP) ?

Whether or not the apparition is genuine, or that the “ghost” is really that of FPJ or, for that matter, whether ghosts or spirits of dead people are real, Filipinos should well learn from the lessons of the 2004 presidential elections and proclamation fraud. If the people of the Southeast Asian islands with a blatantly colonial name, i.e., the Philippines, are to emerge not necessarily as one and united, but even just as a race dignified by basic morals of fairness and electoral honesty, they would need to learn from its recent electoral history.

As seen in the GMA-7’s “24 Oras” news video footage, an apparition or figure of sorts that looked , moved and dressed like FPJ seemed to have left or passed through the late actor’s image on the hanged tarpaulin poster hanging by the wall of his tomb. The incident was captured by the cellphone camera of a woman who visited Poe’s tomb. A computer video expert concluded that the footage was either genuine or made by a very technologically sophisticated hoaxer.

Why FPJ could warn us of Lakas-Kampi is obvious. The coalition party is, of course, the party of Arroyo–the machinery that has assured legislative conformity with her unpatriotic agenda and, perhaps more importantly, has primarily squashed all the impeachment attempts against her. Why FPJ would warn the Filipinos about the Liberal Party may not seem so obvious but it probably has all to do with how he got cheated in 2004.

The LP, along with Lakas-Kampi, is thought to be responsible for the congressional dimension of the 2004 presidential poll fraud and cover-up. Making an apparition capturable by a phone camera is possibly FPJ’s way of reminding of the electoral injustice done to him and the people. ‘Don’t vote Lakas-Kampi or LP come May 2010,’ could be the message of the ghost of the man cheated of presidential victory “Hello Garci” style.

Of course, one could claim that FPJ is playing partisan politics, and probably wants his followers to give him posthomous justice by voting for Chiz Escudero, the “batang trapo” (says the democratically uncivil “civil society) who took the cudgel of being his spokesperson during the 2004 presidential polls. Then again, Poe Jr. could be campaigning for his friend, former President Joseph Estrada who was, in the first place, responsible for convincing him to run against Arroyo in 2004. These two speculations, of course, are hinged on whether the apparition is genuine and/or whether spirits are real.

 

Liberal Party Record

Skeptics will definitely not buy the message-of-FPJ-ghost theory. One does not need to believe in apparitions to see that the Liberal Party does not really stand for genuine change, however. The party and its stalwarts ex-Sen. Jovito Salonga and now-presidential contender  Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Aquino III have a recent history of disrespect for the Constitution and simply being tolerant, if not actually engaging in immoral or unethical politics.

 

In Oplan Excelsis/EDSA 2 Coup

First, these party big-names helped installed the Illegitimate, later surveyed to be the “Most Corrupt President in Philippine History.” During the height of the anti-Estrada movement back in 2000-2001, Salonga was, of course in the forefront of those wanting Erap to resign or be impeached. Noynoy Aquino was then a Congressman for Tarlac. As recounted by The Daily Tribune’s Ninez Cacho-Olivares, the only son of the late Sen. Benigno “Ninoy” Aquino and ex-President Corazon “Cory” Aquino, was among those who hailed the move of then-Speaker Manuel “Manny” Villar to transmit the impeachment complaint to the Senate-even without the benefit of plenary vote.

When things didn’t work out to their liking during the Senate impeachment hearings, the LP members joined those who walked out and amassed in EDSA 2 to oust Estrada. Of course, the 2001 coup was “legitimized” by the Davide court’s ruling that Joseph Estrada did “constructive resignation” even in the absence of a resignation letter or actual physical incapacity. Still, that novel , never-before-heard SC decision won’t take away the fact that it was a coup, the fruition of Plan B of the Oplan Excelsis revealed in October 2000 by The Daily Tribune, which was, in turn, predated by a series of Manila Standard articles on anti-Estrada destabilization efforts during the early part of the same year.

 

LP’s Role in 2004 Poll Cheating/Cover-up

Next, their disloyalty to the Constitution by way of the penchant for going against the people’s will was manifested anew during the 2004 elections. Not only did Salonga, et al. avidly campaign for Arroyo but worse, they took part in what the “Hello Garci” tapes would later reveal to be a fraudulent proclamation of the “President-elect.”

As described by Daily Tribune’s Demaree Raval, this was accomplished when “the leaders of the LP railroaded the national [congressional] canvass.” The LP was “in the thick of the cheating” as its leaders simply noted the objections while members of Fernando Poe’s camp “were crying themselves hoarse against the fraud” during the congressional canvassing. It should be recalled that LP Sen. Francisco “Kiko” Pangilinan was the chairman of the Joint Congressional Canvassing Committee.

The opposition camp was trying to present evidence of electoral fraud before the committee but they were basically not allowed to. The lawyers, and congressional supporters of FPJ and running mate Loren Legarda were blocked from having select ballot boxes containing contested certificates of canvass or COCs opened. During the canvassing, Pangilinan earned the moniker of “Sen. Noted” because he struck down all objections and arguments to prove electoral fraud by his frequent utterances of the now-infamous word “Noted.”

Raval also writes that opposition solons and lawyers were prevented by LP members from even speaking or presenting “the election returns to prove the lie of the manufactured certificates of canvass.” He must be referring to the likes of Cong. Butch Abad, LP representative from Batanes, who silenced the voice of those who justly wanted Congress to look into the evidence of presidential poll fraud. Benigno Simeon “Noynoy” Aquino III, then an LP congressman from Tarlac, might not have actively taken part in railroading the canvass but as journalist Ninez Cacho-Olivares notes, “kept his mouth shut even in the face of massive electoral cheating.”

For the flimsy excuse that it would take a long time to study the questioned COCs, the country was deprived of knowing who really won in the 2004 presidential polls. Subsequently, Liberal Party solons led by Senate President Franklin Drilon and Pangilinan, along with other congressional cheats, sealed the canvassing charade when they surreptitiously proclaimed Gloria as the “President-elect” during the wee hours of the June 24, 2004. A break-of-dawn congressional proclamation (earlier, actually: 3:38 am) was unprecedented but it succeeded in preempting any protest or opposition action that could have derailed Arroyo’s “proclamation.”

In the 2004 deprivation of the Filipinos’ right to clean and honest polls, the LP played a crucial role. Arroyo, and players like LP members, thought they got away with the great crime that the “Hello, Garci” expose would later unravel.

 

Telling “Hello Garci’ Tapes

The wiretapped evidence of 2004 electoral fraud (OK, alleged) was first exposed in mid-2005. Former National Bureau of Investigation deputy director Samuel Ong later would soon present the master tapes. The wiretapped records that have come to be known as the “Hello Garci” tapes primarily show the conversations between Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and elections commissioner Virgilio “Garci” Garcillano in connection with operations surrounding the May 11 elections and vote canvassing. The operations revealed by the tapes were designed to cheat Arroyo’s way towards her continued hold on power and rob FPJ of electoral victory.

The more telling of the tapes shows a woman believed to be Arroyo asking “Garci” to ensure for her a 1 million lead over FPJ. In another dated May 26, 2004, Arroyo informs Garci that she has “allies” in the Senate, which could allow them to delay “the senatorial canvassing until after the voting on the rules” that night.

Actually, even prior to May 2004, the LP seemed to have already taken the resolve to ensure the victory of Arroyo by hook or by crook. Raval writes on the role of the LP in trying to disqualify FPJ from the 2004 presidential elections:

“Even before the elections, the senators belonging to the LP prevented the report of the Angara Committee establishing the Manapat forgeries on the birth certificate of then presidential candidate Fernando Poe Jr. and the marriage certificate of FPJ’s parents.”

Raval tags the LP members responsible for the 2004 proclamation of Arroyo as perhaps the country’s “worst politicians,” having gone “to bed with her, who prostituted themselves for political patronage, who enjoyed the power that went with being with the lying and the cheating and the stealing, then all too suddenly turned against Gloria” when the “Hello Garci” tapes were exposed.

What the Daily Tribune columnist is basically saying is the LP members who took part in the 2004 electoral fraud are immoral political chameleons who could change color as readily as they cried “Garci!” Obviously, why the LP leaders broke off with Gloria in 2005 was the opportunity to make the people falsely believe that they took no part in cheating FPJ in favor of Arroyo.

On July 8, 2005, practically as soon as the “Hello Garci” expose hugged the headlines, Cory called for a news conference where she asked Arroyo to resign. For a time, she continued her demand for the illegitimate’s resignation, with her son Noynoy joining in as a good chunk of LP members bolted out of the alliance with Gloria.

This makes one wonder, however, whether the reason why Salonga, et al joined in the “Hello Garci” condemnation was only to make it falsely appear to the late former President Corazon “Cory” Aquino that during the whole time that they went through the motions of canvassing and proclamation, they were totally unaware of Arroyo’s cheating? One could even ask whether the LP did it only so that Noynoy would not be chastised by his mother for doing nothing while FPJ was cheated in the canvassing? Either one of these or Cory herself was part of, or aware of, the 2004 poll fraud and cover-up–something rather unlikely.

 

“Dadayain”

As early as around April 2004, this column was already aware that poll fraud will be done to ensure Gloria Arroyo’s presidential victory. A person rather close to me, and within the vicinity of power no matter how low-key s/he may be, confided that “dadayain” the presidential elections. I remember him/her adding something like “I hope the country can weather the storm that is sure to come.”

Salonga and this person share a rather influential organization, one breeding ground of the influential (clue: University of the Philippines). If this resource person of mine was aware of the operation to doctor the 2004 presidential elections, so were Sen. Salonga and, it should logically follow, the rest of Liberal Party biggies.

My resource person did not actually name Salonga or the Liberal Party as parties to the poll fraud plan. Neither did I ask him/her who exactly were involved because I couldn’t accept his/her revelations to be true (s/he also vaguely talked of the advanced parties from Gloria’s camp as distributing goodies in areas where poll-related surveys were scheduled to be held). I guess I couldn’t believe that “good people” in the government would allow something as blatantly immoral as cheating to happen. Suffice it to say, however, that putting the two and two of “Hello Garci,” Sen. “Noted,” and my resource person’s political/organizational ties and revelations together, a not unclear role of the LP in the 2004 presidential poll fraud emerges.

 

FPJ Ghost or no FPJ Ghost

Whether or not the FPJ cemetery ghost story is real, the Filipino people need to be wary of the Liberal Party of today, nay, punish the party by not voting their bets. By the way, Kris Aquino reportedly is being visited by the spirit of her mom. The late Cory Aquino, it should be recalled, apologized to former President Estrada for part in the “2001 uprising.” Noynoy apparently tried to save face for the Liberal Party by claiming that the apology was a joke but the only compromise he was ultimately able to wrangle from his mom was the statement that it was indeed “said in jest but she’s not taking it back.”

It seems fairly obvious to anyone sober enough not to be taken by the lies of EDSA 2 that Noynoy Aquino’s association with LP make him a ‘bad trapo’? Is it possible that Cory’s ghost is telling the same message–Noynoy be wary of, rather, get out from, the seemingly politically prostituted party that is LP!?

Note:

One of my parents was an avid LP supporter. I don’t exactly feel good because I never thought I’ll be writing something like this about the party to which Diosdado Macapagal and Ninoy Aquino belonged. Change for the moral good, genuine good change, is what our country needs, however. Besides, isn’t the need to ensure “clean and honest elections” one of the chief lessons the Philippines is supposed to have learned from the Marcos experience (when even the bird, bees and the dead supposedly voted in 1969, ultimately allowing Apo Ferdie’s 1972 declaration of Martial Law)?

 

I’m tired of Mafia in LP, says Serge ñOsmea

By Jhunnex Napallacan, Leila Salaverria, Michael Lim Ubac

Philippine Daily Inquirer

First Posted 02:48:00 11/20/2009

MANILA, Philippines — Crying double-cross, former Sen. Sergio “Serge” Osmeña III said on Thursday he is abandoning his quest for a Senate seat under the Liberal Party (LP) in the upcoming elections and is running as an independent in protest over the inclusion of former Socioeconomic Secretary Ralph Recto in its senatorial lineup.

“That is almost final,” Osmeña said in an interview Thursday night, denouncing a “Mafia” in the party of Sen. Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III and disappointment at “infighting” in its ranks.

Osmeña explained that he did not want Recto in the LP lineup, calling him “pro-GMA” for doing nothing to expose shenanigans in President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s administration as head of the National Economic and Development Authority.

He said he had told LP officials he would no longer be a part of the party with Recto in it.

Recto and his wife, Vilma Santos, a multi-awarded movie actress and Batangas governor, defected from the administration coalition earlier this week to join the LP. He had sought reelection as a senator in the 2007 balloting with the administration coalition but lost.

Osmeña said he told LP general campaign manager Florencio Abad twice and his assistant, Rapa Lopa, once about his position on Recto.

The former senator said he felt he had been double-crossed when party officials met on Sunday to finalize the acceptance of Recto without even informing him.

“They kept me in the dark,” he said.

Osmeña also said that he believed the LP wanted to get the Batangas governor to boost the party and was forced to accept Recto as a condition.

He said he would discuss the issue with Aquino one more time, possibly Friday night.

Asked if there was a possibility he would change his mind, he said he was through (Ayaw ko na). “It would be difficult.”

Fed up with fighting

Osmeña said that there were people around Aquino that he did not trust.

“I’m fed up with the inside fighting, with the Mafia in the Liberal Party,” he said.

Asked to name names, Osmeña laughed. But he clarified that he still believed Aquino was the best presidential candidate based on his track record, his good values and his being an honest person.

However, he said he would no longer carry Aquino or Sen. Manuel “Mar” Roxas II in his campaign as an independent although he would include senatorial candidates that he described as good officials in LP’s senatorial slate, such as Teofisto Guingona III and Raffy Biazon.

Asked why he would not carry Aquino in the campaign although his mother, the late President Corazon Aquino, helped him when he ran for senator before, Osmeña said he had done enough for him.

“We have helped him a lot. And I will not say any negative words against Noynoy,” Osmeña said.

Political maverick

He also said he would remain a member of the PDP-Laban although he would run as an independent. Osmeña, however, said he might join Sen. Francis Escudero if he pursues his plan of running for vice president.

A known maverick when he was in the Senate, Osmeña disclosed that he had received offers from the camp of Sen. Manuel Villar and former President Joseph Estrada to run under their respective parties but he refused their offers on Wednesday.

“I turned down Erap and Villar already. I want a higher standard of public service. I don’t want to have extra baggage when I run and win because my loyalty is to the Filipino people,” Osmeña said.

LP spokesperson Quezon Rep. Lorenzo “Erin” Tañada III said the party had yet to strike

Osmeña’s name from its list of senatorial aspirants (nine so far).

Tañada also said that Aquino was still talking to Osmeña: “Well, there are still efforts from Senator Noynoy; talks are still continuing to ask him to remain. But just the same, we are also not filling his slot. We won’t change him for another candidate.”

Recto surprised

In a statement, Recto said he was “surprised” to hear that Osmeña “is planning to leave the LP just because I joined the movement of Noynoy and Mar [Roxas] for clean politics.”

Recto said he and his wife did not apply but were “invited” by the LP to back the Aquino-Roxas tandem.

“My service in government is of public record. It is one unstained by any charge of corruption or wrongdoing,” he said, apparently responding to Osmeña’s assertion he could not accept a former Palace ally in the LP.

“I have always been known to speak my mind, be it on the floor of the House, the committee rooms of the Senate, or inside Malacañang,” Recto said, adding:

“I have never allowed my party affiliation to get in the way of my principles.”

Recto also said he had opposed the Arroyo administration’s unpopular policies.

He said even Osmeña, as a senator, supported the passage of the value-added tax (VAT) that he had sponsored.

Nothing categorical

While the LP is bent on holding on to Osmeña, the chance is “remote” that representatives of militant party-list groups will seek seats in the Senate under its banner.

Bayan Muna Rep. Satur Ocampo, who, along with Gabriela Rep. Liza Maza, is running for senator in May 2010, said a dinner meeting on Wednesday with a “relaxed” Aquino did not result in anything clear.

“At the minimum, [we talked about] what in his platform we could work together on. But he was silent about whether we would be included among those [the LP] would consider [as senatorial candidates]. There was nothing categorical like that,” Ocampo told reporters at the Serye forum in Quezon City.

He also aired the perception that there were many groups surrounding Aquino, with each one having a say on who would be included in the LP senatorial slate.

Also present at the dinner meeting that took place in a restaurant on Pasay Road in Makati were Erin Tañada, LP campaign manager Abad, LP secretary general Cavite Rep. Joseph Abaya and Nathanael Santiago of the Makabayan coalition, which will carry Ocampo and Maza as its senatorial candidates.

Falling in line

Ocampo said he and Maza were told that the applicants for the remaining slots in the LP slate were numerous.

“They said those falling in line were more than twice the number of slots, and that there were special groups lobbying to be accommodated,” he said.

So far, the names on the LP senatorial slate are Osmeña, former senator Franklin Drilon, Brig. Gen. Danilo Lim, Muntinlupa Rep. Rossano Biazon, Bukidnon Rep. Teofisto Guingona III, former Bukidnon Rep. Nereus Acosta, Sonia Roco and Akbayan party-list Rep. Risa Hontiveros.

Options, not feelings

Ocampo said that during the dinner, Aquino mostly focused his remarks on his family’s efforts to find a way to solve the problems at Hacienda Luisita.

He said Aquino did not express any ill feelings about the issues involving Luisita, and “discussed options, not how bad he felt.”

The vast sugar estate in Tarlac province is in the middle of a bitter agrarian reform dispute.

Ocampo said Aquino had promised to continue studying the issues and to look after the farmers’ interest even if his family would let go of Luisita.

Talumpati ni JOSEPH “ERAP “ EJERCITO ESTRADA

Speech ( Talumpati ) of President JOSEPH EJERCITO ESTRADA on the occasion of the 13th Anniversary Celebration of the EDSA Revolution at the EDSA Shrine, Quezon City, at 3:30 p.m. of February 22, 1999.)

TAOS-puso akong bumabati sa lahat ng ating mga kababayan sa makasaysayang okasyong ito, and ika-labintatlong anibersaryo ng EDSA People Power Revolution. Isang malaking karangalan para sa akin ang makasama sa pagkakataong ito ang mga bayani ng EDSA na nagpamalas sa mundo na kaya ng sambayanang Pilipinong ibalik ang demokrasya sa mapayapang paraan.

Kung hindi dahil sa kanila, hindi magiging, makabuluhan ang pagdiriwang natin ng ikasandaang taon ng ating kalayaan noong nakaraang taon, bale-wala rin sana ang pagsapit ng sentenaryo ng ating pagka-bansa noong nakaraang Enero, dahil ano ang silbi ng paggunita natin sa unang Republika ng Pilipinas kung hindi naman tayo malaya?

Kung hindi dahil sa kanila, wala rin marahil Pangulo ngayon na Joseph Ejercito Estrada. Kaya’t sa araw na ito, muli nating pasalamatan ng lubos ang kanilang kagitingan at dakilang pagmamahal sa ating bayan. Si Pangulong Cory Aquino ang siyang naging simbolo ng pagbabalik ng demokrasya sa ating bansa, ipinamana niya sa ating lahat ang isang matatag na demokrasya.

Si Pangulong Fidel V. Ramos naman ay muling pinatatag ang ating pamahalaan at binuhay ang ating pambansang ekonomiya. Walang pagod niyang pinagtibay ang kapayapaan, na siya namang naging pundasyon ng mga reporma para palakasin ang ating bansa.

Ang minamahal nating Jaime Cardinal Sin ay wala ring pagod na binabantayan ang ating demokrasya. Dahil sa kanya, ang simbahan ay nanatiling isang malakas na puwersa para maging tapat ang mga pulitiko na magsilbi sa bayan.

Ipinakita rin ng iba pa nating mga Bayani ng EDSA na hindi nagtapos sa pagbabalik ng ating demokrasya ang kanilang paglilingkod sa bayan, si dating Defense Secretary Juan Ponce Enrile ay kung ilang beses nang naging senador. Si Butz Aquino ng August twenty-One Movement, o ATOM, ay naging senador din at ngayon naman ay Congressman ng Makati City. At si Col. Gringo Honasan ay Senador na rin.

Diyan natin makikita na ang ating tinatamasang demokrasya ngayon ay hindi lamang nila ipinaglaban noon sa EDSA. Ipinaglalaban pa rin nila ito ngayon – sa senado, sa kongreso, sa simbahan, maging sa lansangan. At sa kaso ng dalawa nating dating Pangulo, higit pa nila itong pinalakas sa Malakanyang. Pitong taon na ang nakaraan, nagkaroon ng mapayapang pagsalin ng kapangyarihan mula kay Pangulong Aquino kay Pangulong Ramos. At noong nakaraang Hunyo naman ng taong nakalipas ay mapayapa ring isinalin sa akin ni Pangulong Ramos ang pagiging Pangulo. Ito ay nagpapatunay ng katatagan ng ating kaayusang pampulitika.

The Legacy of EDSA

I stand before you today fortunate and proud to have succeeded two worthy leaders who not only kept the legacy of EDSA alive but also enhanced its spirit.

Today, Filipinos live in the glory of democracy and by ways of freedom. This restored democracy and freedom we all owe to that momentous event when Filipinos from all walks of life came out with one heart, one soul, one voice to prove that tanks could be powerless against rosaries and guns could be silenced by prayers.

EDSA was, by and large, a reawakening. It was when people subordinated personal interests to the national good. It was when Filipinos became truly Filipinos – deserving of the sacrifices of our heroes and that of man who believed they were worth dying for.

Naririto tayo ngayon upang sariwain ang bahagi ng ating kasaysayan nagpakilala sa kagitingan ng ating lahi sa buong mundo. Ang EDSA revolution ay labis na hinangaan at di naglaon ay pinamarisan ng iba pang mga
sumisibol na demokrasya. Sa Germany, sa Hungary, Sa Korea, sa Rusya, maging sa Tsina at Myanmar, naging inspirasyon nila ang kabayanihang ipinamalas ng sambayanang Pilipino mula ika-22 hangang ika-25 ng Pebrero
noong taong 1986.

Standing by the ways of freedom

Nang dahil sa EDSA, ang inyong abang lingkod ay naging Pangulo ng sambayanang may kalayaan pumili at maghalal kaya naman tungkulin kong ipagpatuloy ang simulaing nagbalik sa ating karapatang mamuhay nang
malaya.

Alam ng marami na ako po ay natanggal sa puwesto bilang Mayor ng San Juan pagkatapos ng EDSA tinanggap ko ‘yon bilang paraan upang maipatupad ang malawakang reporma. Kung hindi sa pangyayaring iyon, baka hindi ako naging Senador, Bise-Presidente, at ngayon, inyong Pangulo.

There is truth to the saying that when God closes a window, he opens a bigger door. When the Filipinos went through great sufferings before EDSA, they were just being prepared for something bigger.

Kung pinatatag ni Pangulong Aquino ang ating demokrasya at binuhay naman ni Pangulong Ramos ang ating ekonomiya, ano pa ang aking pwedeng gawin para mapabuti ang kalagayan ng mga Pilipino? Ano ang kailangan kong gawin para manatiling buhay ang diwa ng EDSA?

The fight continues

Mga minamahal kong kababayan, di pa tapos ang laban ng EDSA. Hindi magiging ganap ang ating kalayaan kung ang masang Pilipino ay nabubuhay pa rin sa kahirapan.

More than one hundred years ago, the masses pinned their hopes for a better life on the attainment of independence. They fought for what they believed to be the broader goals of the revolution – a brotherhood among Filipinos, equal opportunities for the rich and the poor, and the eradication of poverty.

Hindi pa nating nakakamit ang mga hangaring yan kaya’t ito ang ating ipinaglalaban ngayon – ang ma-ahon ang ating mga kababayan sa kahirapan, mabigyan sila ng katarungan. Mabawi ang kanilang dignidad at mabuhay nang mapayapa at masagana.

Nariyan pa rin ang maraming hamon na dapat nating harapin tulad ng kakulangan sa pagkain, disenteng tirahan at mahusay na edukasyon ng ating mga maliliit na kababayan. Patuloy nating nilalabanan ang anomalya sa Gobyerno, ang pagnanakaw sa kaban ng bayan, at pagsasamantala sa kapuwa. Susugpuin natin ang kriminalidad at paglaganap ng mga bawal na gamot puputulin din natin ang pag-aabuso ng iilan sa ating kalikasan.

Today we are waging new battles against the tyranny of poverty, against graft and corruption against criminality, against drug abuse and trafficking, against the degradation of the environment.

Dito natin kailangan ang diwa ng EDSA – ang ating pagkakaisa, at pagtutulungan. At ako’y handang mamuno sa labang ito. Ang tanging hangad ko ngayon ay maalaala bilang Pangulong naging kampeon ng mahihirap, at sisiguraduhin kong mangyari ito sa natitira pang 1,955 araw ng aking panunungkulan.

The need for unity and solidarity today

Mas malaki, mas malawak at mas malalim ang hamon na naghinintay sa mga Pilipino ngayon hindi pa tapos ang pakikibaka natin laban sa mga kaaway ng tunay na kalayaan – ang kalayaang mamuhay ng marangal at sapat sa mga pangunahing pangangailangan.

Kung tayong lahat aymagtutulungan tulad nang ginawa natin noon sa EDSA, kaya nating labanan ang hamon na ‘yan at mas malayo pa ang ating mararating kung ang mga taga-Maynila, Baguio, Cebu, Davao, Cotabato at iba pang sulok ng Pilipinas ay nagkaisa noong 1986, bakit hindi tayo pwedeng magkaisa ngayon? Kung nagsama-sama tayo noon – bata man o matanda, may-kaya o wala, kristiyano at Muslim, bakit hindi tayo magsama-samang muli?

Sa halip na tayo ay maghatakan pababa, tayo ay magkapit-bisig, imbes na mag-iringan, tayo ay mag-usap ng mahinahon. Imbes na pintasan ang iba, tayo ay kumilos na lamang at gumawa ng aksiyon.

Tanging ang ating pagkakaisa ang makasasagip sa ating kalagayan ngayon. Ito rin ang dahilan kung bakit, isang daang taon mula nang makamit natin ang kalayaan at labing-tatlong taon matapos mabalik ang ating demokrasya, tayo ay hindi umunlad ng husto at napag-iwanan ng ating mga karatig-bansa. Si Pangulong Aguinaldo, sa pagbubukas ng Kongreso sa Barasoain na siyang nagtatag sa ating Republika ay nagbigay ng ganitong payo sa ating mga kababayan: “Mag-isang loob tayo, sa pagka’t walang ibang magkakapatid
kundi tayo-tayo rin” bilang Pangulo sa simula ng pangalawang Daang taon ng ating pagka-bansa ito pa rin ang aking hinihiling nang sabihin kong “Walang tutulong sa Pilipino kundi kapwa Pilipino.”

Closing

Let us achieve reconcilation based on justice. Let us attain unity and solidarity so we can move our country forward faster. Isantabi natin ang mga personal na interes at pamumulitika para sa kapakanan ng nakrarami. This should be the way of freedom and democracy, this is the only way to go for Filipinos.
Magiging makabuluhan lamang ang ating pagdiriwang na ito kung ang pagkakaisang pinanindigan ng mga Pilipino sa EDSA noong 1986 ay muli nating bubuhayin sa kasalukuyang panahon.

To ensure that the legacy of EDSA lives on, I here today issuing an executive order creating an EDSA People Power Commission to perpetuate and propagate the spirit of EDSA. Among its functions will be to initiate activities that will expand awareness of the principles and values that the EDSA people revolution stands for and plan, organize and implement the yearly commemoration of the February 22-25, 1986 EDSA revolution.

The commission shall have 25 members, to be chaired by a cabinet member and cochaired by a private sector, representative. Lifetime honorary membership to the commission shall be given to former President Corazon C. Aquino, former President Fidel V. Ramos, and Manila Archbishop Jaime Cardinal Sin.

Tulad nga po ng aking sinabi sa “Ulat sa Bayan” sa simula ng atong ito: Sa ating pagkakaisa at pagtutulungan tayo ay sabaysabay na babangon bilang isang bansa, bilang isang lipunan, bilang isang lahi.
Maraming salamat at mabuhay ang sambayanang Pilipino!